Review of John Harte Photo

The blog I’ll be reviewing may be found here: John Harte Photo.

John Harte Photo is a self styled blog built using WordPress’s (I’m assuming) free WYSIWYG editor, titled: “You can’t have my job, but I’ll tell you a story”–even the page’s title is intriguing. The blog is about a photojournalist’s life in “one hell of a news town” and the trials and tribulations of those items that are deemed newsworthy: killer bees, poisoned watermelons, and the more than occasional murder trial. From the outset, my curiosity was piqued. I couldn’t wait to jump in and look through the blog’s content.

John Harte Photo uses a simple gray background and simple serif-based font that work well together. These are used to equal effect to lend the site an air of authenticity. True, in most cases, the serif-based fonts are a bit tiring on the eyes, but this site uses a larger, easier to read, font size. This choice ameliorates the fatiguing effect that can be easily overlooked by those that are not conscious of the impact of serif based fonts.

As to the site’s content: the site contains a listing  that is not in any chronological order; and in most cases, that would irk me–but the lack of chronological order lends the site a feeling of meandering through the memories of a photojournalist whom has seen a lot. Being a photographer, this makes complete sense to me; we see images, and reactions. Often while searching my own memory, I try to find an image associated with the event/memory I wish to recall. Although, this may not make sense to those whom are visually-endowed.

Overall, I would say this is a successful blog. The design choices are simple, and attentive to the needs of the viewer in re: font choice and size, as well as the feed itself. The site contains two pages. A Home page and an About The Project page. There’s even an interactive calendar to search for blog posts–something I found quite useful.

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An unsuccessful blog…?

The blog I will be reviewing may be found here: maudnewton.com.

The site maudnewton.com is a self-styled blog containing “Occasional literary links, amusements, culture, politics, and rants,” as well as links to the site author’s published works, and twitter feed. At the outset, the site is playful and contains some nice features: the twitter feed and the external links to published works. However, some of the “playfulness” is ill thought and a bit distracting. I did not like the blog designer’s choice as to page header. The page uses a header that includes cut outs of letters forming the page’s title/header. This is a fitting example of a header for a writer–but can come of as a bit psychopathic, as in those psychopaths whom comprise letters of ransom made of letters cut out of magazines or newspapers.

What does work for the site, is that the content is easily navigable, the color scheme is mostly unified–although a bit errant in the “psycho-header”–and the font choice is pleasing to the eye. On the right of the page is the author Maud Newton’s (I’m assuming) twitter feed. She is active on Twitter and has some nice insights. The remainder of the page is comprised of links to, as well as a feed, of her published works. The overall color scheme is black, red, and white. Three colors I find pleasing, but compounds the feeling I’ve stated previous in re: the “psycho-header.” Also, the font choice is a sans-serif font, and is easily read.

Overall, I would say the blog is okay, but could use a bit of thought, or better site management in terms of layout and design.